Sunday, 21 December 2014

An Interview with Piyush Raj (DNV-GL)



Dr. Piyush Raj
Dr. Piyush is the head of DNV-GL Group (India), and currently heads the DNV GL Maritime Academy in India. With an experience of more than twenty years, he has sailed as a marine engineer, following which he chose a career in management services in the maritime industry.

Having graduated as doctoral student of IIM Lucknow, Piyush has served maritime organizations with various managerial responsibilities. He is also awarded the Lloyds Register Merit Scholarship.

In an interview with Learn Ship Design, Piyush shares his experience in the maritime industry, and gives us an insight into the real structure of DNV-GL, the world's leading classification society (as of 2014).

It has recently been a year since the merger of DNV and GL. How do you think it has propelled the growth of DNV-GL to becoming the world's leading classification society?

You know, DNV and GL have been organizations with complementary skill set. We merged primarily because the guiding fundamentals for quality and innovation were same. That has helped us a lot to come together, and to provide a much wider and broader reach to our clients. To that extent we have been successful, and we feel we are in a better position to serve our clients. 

This industry demands experience. How do you value the importance of young brains in your organization?

Honestly, I don't have the complete answer. I have been working for the last twenty years, and the past two years at DNV-GL. It doesn't matter what you do as an individual. What matters, is how you set values to the organization. Even if you are experienced, if you don't bring value to the organization, it will not serve the vision. So I think, we value a lot of team work in our organization, rather than only focusing on experience.

What qualities do you look for, in graduate Naval Architects?

If you are not willing to learn from what you are going to see in the clients' place or in the office, or in the maritime environment around you, what you have learnt from the previous experience is not going to efficient. So if you ask me one single thing that is important, it is the urge to keep learning. One should stay inquisitive, and learn as you go.

What are the challenges that you face, being the world's leading classification society?

To serve our clients in the best possible way, to ensure that their challenges are being addressed, and to ensure that we remain safer, smarter and greener as a maritime industry. 

DNV-GL has recently shown the path for bio-fuels in the maritime industry. How far has it been implemented successfully

It is still being tested actually. Though the initial information has been passed on to the maritime industry, it is up to the industry and the commercial business to support it and see how well this can be implemented in the future.

What factors do you think, enabled the company to survive and grow for 150 years?

What I clearly see, is that it doesn't really matter what you do in day to day life that propels an organization. There are set values of the organization and you work for that. You must be technically confident, but as a whole, if you don't bring value to the client, it won't be appreciated. For instance, we had to provide an optimal solution that required a mathematical modelling. The iterations required were about three million, before coming down to the optimum result. But in spite of that, our client preferred to have a simplified thumb rule for the same model, which could be synced well to the workshop level. And we could satisfy that due to the enormous amount of data that we have in store for all these years. So yes, a lot of data churning, and the passion to go beyond 99 percent, have been the key. 

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